[Mailman-Users] Reply-To in 2.1b3 changed

Peter Bengtson peter.bengtson at musikelit.nu
Wed Aug 14 13:22:43 CEST 2002

Tom Whiting wrote:
> This is something that was enabled by you.
> To change that, go through the config pages of your individual list, and find
> out how to change it back to what it should be.
> By default, mailman sets the reply to the USER that posted the mail. Anyhing
> other than that is a result of an administrative error.

Thanks for the reply, but I'm afraid you are misunderstanding the
question. I'm not a naïve user: the list has always been set up to
direct the reply to the _list_, not the posting user. (The discussion
whether that is a Good Thing or a Bad Thing is beside the pointm, but
there are some good pointers in Mailman itself, and also in the
documentation should you want to read more about it.) In this case, it
is what we need - it is not an administrative error. It is not the
problem, which is the following:

Prior to 2.1b3, the Reply-To (as well as the To header) looked like this:

	Reply-To: blah at frob.com
	      To: blah at frob.com

However, since 2.1b3 it now looks like this:

	Reply-To: This is a list intended for bla bla bla bla <blah at frob.com>
	      To: This is a list intended for bla bla bla bla <blah at frob.com>

The design team has for some reason decided to include the Description
of the list  (entered on the General Options page) in the Reply-To and
To headers. This is, IMHO, a Bad Idea. Furthermore, there seems to be no
way of turning this new behaviour off, other than setting the
Description field to blank, or hacking the code (which is doable).

It would be far better, however, if the design decision was reversed - I
see no reason for the Description to be used as a Recipient; for a
special field containing the Reply-To and To recipient cleartext info to
be introduced; for the list name to be used instead; or for a radio
button to be created to turn this behaviour on and off.

	/ Peter Bengtson

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